A singer-songwriter whose infectious hits graced the Billboard Charts for much of the 70’s, Jim Messina helped usher in the soft rock era. As a founding member of both the country rock supergroup Poco and the pop juggernaut Loggins & Messina (“Danny’s Song,” “Your Mama Don’t Dance”), the veteran troubadour has already made his sizable mark on rock and roll. Thankfully, he’s still going strong.
Jim Messina first came to prominence as a key contributor to the iconic 60’s group Buffalo Springfield, producing, engineering and playing bass on the group’s final record Last Time Around in 1968. Following the dissolution of that band, Messina and fellow Buffalo Springfield alum Richie Furay formed the influential band Poco. With Poco, Messina acted as singer, guitarist and producer, the band’s fusion of honky-tonk and rock and roll forming the template for what would become the genre of country rock. His standout track “You Better Think Twice” became the unofficial anthem of the band. Messina recorded two studio records and one live album before leaving the band to focus on producing and engineering.
The hiatus from performing didn’t last long however. Messina hooked up with a little known songwriter named Kenny Loggins with the intention of producing the talented young singer. The two had an immediate chemistry and formed the basis of the soft rock hit-making machine Loggins & Messina. Their first record Sittin In jumped out of the gates quickly, scoring a huge hit single with “Danny’s Song” in 1971. The duo’s popularity only increased with their eponymous sophomore effort, which featured the FM rock staple “Your Mama Don’t Dance.” Throughout much of the 70’s, Loggins & Messina remained a recording and touring success, in all releasing six studio albums and two live records.
Messina’s solo career began in the late 70’s, highlighted by 1979’s Oasis which featured shades of Latin Jazz elements. He released two more well-received records on his own name in the 80’s, and took part in a handful of Poco reunion tours throughout the last 25 years. In 2005 and again in 2009 Messina reunited with Loggins for extensive nationwide tours. In recent years, Messina has returned to solo material, coming out with the Latin-tinged Under the Mojito Moon in 2009, and a live CD/DVD in 2012.
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